My husband and I visited Top Drawer in January, under a new look and feel and branding which has made a huge difference to the entrance, and layout of the entire show. Having been an exhibitor there a few years ago for my mother’s business, I can really see how the show has moved on creatively and space wise. There is plenty of room to walk around in between stands and not feel intimidated as a exhibitor or attendee.
A lovely display of products for Spring 2016, but certain things caught my eye, as they always do. Last season I predicted the rise of copper as a colour and the rise of the pineapple and flamingo into our homes. So nice to see plenty of these themes still running through plenty of products.
The greetings card section was of course full of exciting ideas, some lovely hand written typography and a nice mix of colour versus natural tones and neon. The exciting area for me is always the home accessories are, mainly because as a family we are obsessed with quirky home interiors. There were some lovely ideas from Parlane, Grand Illusions, Coach House, London Ornaments and Nkuku; if only they were available retail opposed to wholesale.
Again I have always found these shows inspiring for 3D prop ideas, but also design and printed material and gives me a flavour of what is to come from stationery, home accessories, home in general and design for the year. It really mixes all of my loves – print, colour, pattern and quirky unusual design. All I would say is, the Gift section of the show was far more exciting to walk around, it almost felt they’d designed the stands to be more intriguing and interactive, so we spent a lot of time walking in and out of some fabulous products and stands themselves, whereas the Home section was a bit more corporate and bland. I think the two need to either be separate or marry more together, as the Gift section was definitely busier and creating more interest.